People- and Planet-Friendly
Home | Calendar | GoodWork | Post an Event/Job | Links | Forum | Search | About | Contact | Donate

Alternative Voices
Alternative Media, Resource & Networking Guide
(a People & Planet Gateway & Guide)

On this page you will find links to a variety of alternative voices – and opportunities for participation. We start with a section on how the media may be contributing to society’s greatest problems, and what you can do about it. This is followed by sections of links to a wonderful array of alternative websites, print magazines, radio, TV, film & video, books and more. Face-to-face communication is key, so we include listings of resource centres, gathering places and events. Finally, we wrap up with a section on how to "become the media" as a writer, by starting your own publication or website, or simply by writing a letter to the editor.

(1) What's Wrong With The Media? – What can you do about it?
Alternative Media - Websites & Magazines
E-mail Newsletters & Lists
Radio & TVstationsprograms
Film & Video
Bookscatalogues, on-line shopping, mail orderbookstoreslibraries
Resource Centres & Groupsresource centresgroupsstores
Other Gathering Places – conversation cafes community bulletin boards – the grapevine
Become The Media! Introduction to Journalism & Activism
Media Watch, Media Democracy, Media Activism
Other Media Guides
Quotes & Inspiration
About This Guide

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(1) What's Wrong With The Media?

What's Wrong With The News? – "Independent, aggressive and critical media are essential to an informed democracy. But mainstream media are increasingly cozy with the economic and political powers they should be watchdogging." With articles on corporate ownership, advertiser influence, official agendas, telecommunications policy, the PR industry, pressure groups, the narrow range of debate, censorship, sensationalism.

An Unholy Trinity: Truth, Market Forces and the Media – "Mass media performance - its omissions, biases, distortions, deceptions – reflects the fact that the mass media is itself part of the same power structure that plunders the planet and inflicts human rights abuses on a massive scale."
More by David Cromwell:

Journalism & Power: Watchdog or Accomplice? – "The world's press is losing its ability to keep power in check, says Frank Vogl. He warns the World Bank (and all of us) that corrupt media ownership is endangering development"

The New Global Oppression – "With world power in the hands of a few, the global media stifle culture, dissent and freedom to ensure that the Third World remains behind. Dr. Nawal el Saadawi warns of the 'new colonialism'"

What Makes Mainstream Media Mainstream? – "The real mass media are basically trying to divert people." "We don’t have the KGB on our neck, but the end result comes out pretty much the same. People who have independent ideas or who think the wrong kind of thoughts are cut out." – from a talk by Noam Chomsky

Manufacturing Dissent: Noam Chomsky on Journalism – "The [media's] current mission is to ensure that any thought of controlling their destiny must be driven from the minds of the rascal multitude" Manufacturing Dissent

Media Ownership Chart – Global concentration: AOL Time Warner, Walt Disney, Bertelsmann, Viacom, News Corp, Vivendi

(for more, see the section on Media Watch, below)

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

"In newspaper and TV headline news, a constant stream of sensational and alarming events parades across our numbed consciousness. Most of these ephemeral and mostly irrelevant "news" stories quickly vanish, only to be replaced by fresh distractions. Media mesmerizations are usually presented with little or no context, consideration or appropriate priority. Is this just pandering to the shallow self interest and shortsightedness of "human nature" – or a deliberate design to hide the truths that threaten to "deconstruct" the consumer fantasy world corporate-controlled media has built to market fear and greed?" – Paul Grignon & William Thomas

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

What Can You Do About It?

(1) Practice healthy skepticism, critical thought, ethics
Critical Thought & Logic (2)
Free Speech (2)
Ethics (2)
Detecting Bias

(2) Read alternative, independent media – read and listen to a diversity of alternative media sources, such as those listed below on this page, and mainstream media.

(3) Educate yourself – about media, corporations, politics, government, globalization, ecological economics. Read both alternative and mainstream media; visit progressive bookstores and libraries, attend talks and discussions, visit local non-profit groups and alternative resource centres.
Media Watch:
Corporate Watch:
Democracy Watch:
Globalization 101
Green Economics (2)

(4) Media Activism – A step-by-step guide to getting involved in media activism, from letter-writing to organizing a demonstration. Includes an essential resource list. , (2)

(5) Become the Media – educate yourself and get involved in writing, journalism and politics

"Freedom is participation in power" – Cicero

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(2) Alternative & Independent Media (websites & magazines)

Some interesting and important websites have sprung up over the past few years. They offer original, creative thoughts and ideas, often with a frankness that could be difficult to find elsewhere. From progressive news, opinion, humour and art, to on-line discussion forums and (off-line) events in which you can participate. Each one is different, so look around until you find something you like. Or, if you prefer paper, many of the sites have print magazines and journals – you can subscribe, or purchase a back-issue or special edition of interest to you. Many of these publications are also available at progressive bookstores and natural food stores: a partial listing is provided under "bookstores", below. Print publications are indicated by an asterisk (*).

Environmental & Sustainability Publications

Directory of Green Magazines in Canada and beyond


See also Environmental Groups & Organizations across Canada and beyond.

Social, Economic, Political & Environmental "directory of non-corporate journalism"

Rabble "progressive journalists, writers, artists and activists" (Canadian)
Straight Goods "save money, protect your rights and untangle spin" (Canadian)
Global Outlook magazine & website
Common Dreams
"breaking news & views from the progressive community"
No Logo "the book that became part of a movement" , (Naomi Klein and others) *
Yes! "a journal of positive futures" *
New Internationalist magazine, films, books & more *
Web Networks Community "Canada's online home for social change"
Harper's Magazine *
The Nation *
PR Watch
"exposing the activities of secretive, little-known propaganda-for-hire firms that work to control political debates and public opinion" *
Corp Watch "holding corporations accountable"
Adbusters "a global network of artists, activists, writers, pranksters, students, educators & entrepreneurs" *
The Emperor's New Clothes "piercing a fog of lies"
ZNet & Z Magazine in-depth analysis with Noam Chomsky, Vandana Shiva, Naomi Klein... *
One World Network over 1000 organisations working for social justice
Alternet news, opinion, investigative journalism, article database
Independent Media Centres
(for more, see Other Media Guides, below)

For a more extensive list of print magazines & journals (and their websites):

"A key is just a bunch of little angles, in the right combination." – JP Warren

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(3) Columnists

Of the many excellent writers and thinkers to be found in the above (as well as the "mainstream" media), here are just a few.

Dave Meslin ("Mez"), (under "myTO Columns", click on "Dave Meslin") Archive:
David Suzuki "Science Matters" see also
Bob Hunter (Greenpeace co-founder & CITY TV peace & ecology specialist). Bi-weekly "Enviro" column in Eye magazine.
Naomi Klein "Unlabelled" (click on "Naomi Klein", at right) (see also )
Linda McQuaig "News behind the numbers"

"Where once the student was taught that the unexamined life was not worth living, he is now taught that the profitably lived life is not worth examining." – Benjamin Barber

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(4) E-mail Newsletters & Lists

There is much more to the internet than first meets the eye. E-mail newsletters, lists, and groups can connect you to a whole world of information, ideas and people. They are a great way to learn about – and participate in – the things that interest you. Most are free (or supported by donations). Some only send occasional messages (a monthly e-newsletter, for example), while others send up to a dozen or more messages daily. To subscribe, just go to the website noted and fill in your e-mail address, or follow the instructions provided. To unsubscribe, just follow the instructions, usually provided at the top or bottom of each message.


People- & Planet-Friendly events, courses, broadcasts, jobs, announcements & links (Ontario, Canada, weekly)
Rachel's Environment Weekly "news & resources for environmental justice" (USA, weekly) ,
Biodemocracy News "food safety, organic agriculture, fair trade & sustainability" (USA, bi-monthly) ,
Community Garden Network "gardening, environment, food security" (Toronto, weekly) , ,
Econews by Guy Dauncey "promoting the vision of a sustainable Vancouver Island" (Canada, monthly) ,
Mobilization for Global Justice "fighting corporate globalisation" (Toronto, weekly) to subscribe:
Sustainability Network "management skills and building capacity" for environmental groups (Canada, monthly)
Gallon Environment Letter "eco-politics, economics & science" and "green jobs available" (international, bi-monthly) Partial archives:
OPIRG Toronto "research, education & action on social & environmental justice" (Toronto, ~weekly)
OPIRG McMaster (Hamilton, ~weekly)

Announcement Lists

E-left "announcements, events, press releases, news" (Canada)
PIRG/OPIRG "research, education and action on social & environmental justice" Ontario: USA: Ottawa: archives: Toronto: More:
GoodWork "job announcements & resources" (Ontario, Canada)


MAI-not "free-trade & globalization in its various forms" (MAI, WTO, FTAA, NAFTA...)
Ecovillage "ecovillages & sustainable communities" Canada: USA:
Ontag "Ontario agriculture"

E-mail Tips & Strategies

How to use e-mail and e-mail lists effectively

"A dead thing can go with the stream, but only a living thing can go against it." G.K. Chesterton

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(5) Radio & TV

Campus & Community Radio Stations (2)
The Radio Project – grassroots broadcasters, free radio journalists and cyber-activists share their radio programs via the Internet, free of charge.
CBC (radio & TV) – Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Public broadcasting in Canada & around the world. Radio One, Radio Two, CBC TV, CBC Newsworld (cable TV), shortwave, satellite, and internet RealAudio. , program guides: CBC Radio One programs: (across Canada; in Toronto: FM 99.1)
(TV) – Educational TV in Ontario, Canada. (incl. schedule for next 7 days; donors of $40 or more receive "Signal" program guide monthly, by mail).
CPAC (cable & internet) – Canada’s Political Channel, a.k.a. Cable Public Affairs Channel. Continuous live broadcasts of House of Commons debates, whenever the House is in session. See and hear your MP in action. TV and live streaming video on the internet. (click "schedule", "programs", or "watch now")
The Green Channel (cable TV & satellite & website) – Unique programming directed to all Canadians concerned with their environment. Focus on people, their stories, and how they are working to preserve our future and the environment. Programs for adults, children, and for the whole family to enjoy together, including world music, drama, comedies, how-to’s and hard-edged documentaries. "Our investment structure makes us independent, and provides us with the freedom to speak to all the parties involved in environment issues from the backyard to the boardroom." (Linda Rankin, Green Channel President). Click on "What’s the Buzz" to hear about special campaigns, conferences and national and community events (also broadcast on air). If you are a Rogers or Cogeco digital customer (southern Ontario and parts of N.B. & Nwfd), you can call your cable operator to order the green channel (Cogeco: 1-888-6-Cogeco; Rogers: 1-888-Rogers1). If you are in a different cable area or have a satellite distributor, contact them by phone, fax or email. See our website for a complete list of operators, by region. Launched Dec 18, 2001.
Vision TV (cable & satellite) – "The world’s only multifaith broadcaster providing access to all recognized religions & faiths... values, morals, ethics, spirituality, social justice - all facets of the human condition." Also: "Stories about our changing world, and the impact of such global issues as sustainable development, war and urbanization on individuals and societies" (Planet 360, Wednesdays, 10pm ET, Tuesdays 10pm PT). "Profiles of fascinating individuals, both the famous and the obscure, whose lives and work offer inspiration and enlightenment." (Inspired Lives, Fridays, 9pm ET, 8pm PT). MediaFile (Mondays, 10:30pm ET); Insight (Tuesdays & Thursdays 9pm ET, & Saturdays 8pm ET).
(TV) – USA Public Broadcasting Service
Democracy Now
– internet broadcast; also on radio & TV in the USA
NPR (radio & internet) – USA National Public Radio
Star Ray TV
(community TV, Toronto)
Alternative Radio
(tapes, transcripts & books)
More: ,, , , ,

Here are several that are broadcast across Canada:
Ideas (radio) – on CBC Radio One, across Canada (FM 99.1 in Toronto; also shortwave, satellite & internet RealAudio). Mondays-Fridays 9:05pm Eastern time. Cassettes & transcripts available. Full schedule (several months) available at: (click on "schedule")
The Nature of Things (TV) – with David Suzuki. From environment to market-driven drug research to cyborgs . New show based on Suzuki's best-selling book: The Sacred Balance . David Suzuki Foundation:
CounterSpin (cable TV; live public debate; internet) – Live panel with "town hall style" live audience discussion in which you can participate. With host Sharon Lewis and a live panel. Broadcast across Canada on CBC Newsworld, Mon-Wed 8-9pm with repeat broadcasts at 11pm & 2am Eastern Time. Some recent shows can be watched on the web, using RealOne player. To be in the live audience (and participate in the debate if you wish), call Leslie at 416-646-5211 (broadcast from the CBC Broadcast Centre at John & King). To receive notice of the topics for their upcoming shows, subscribe to their e-mail list: see "Audience Info" at the left side of their webpage.

The New Slaves – "The new slaves are linked together by vast electronic chains of television that imprison not their bodies but their minds. Their desires are programed, their tastes manipulated, their values set for them. Whereas the Black slave was chained to a living master, the new slave has become a digit, a mere item of production that is expended by an invisible master without heart or soul. ...we have delivered our freedoms to a new master, the corporate and governmental conglomerate" – From the forward to the book From Freedom to Slavery, by Gerry Spence

Televisions sedate people. They turn brains to tapioca, bellies to mush. They turn entire lives into missed opportunities. TV's are a cheap escape, a controlled hypnosis. Like any addiction, the more we do it, the worse things get and the more we feel we "need" the thing we're addicted to. Things that once were natural for us to enjoy – reading, conversation, exercise, thought – no longer are. Even in small doses, TV alters one's perceptions and behaviour and steals time from the more important and enjoyable aspects of life. It's not so much a matter of the quality of the programming. The medium itself is hypnotic, non-interactive and socially unbalanced. Tired? – sleep. Bored? – read a book. Stessed? – take a hot shower. Energy to burn? – go for a walk. Lonely? – call a friend, or make plans for tomorrow. There's almost always something better than TV ...if only you don't turn it on!

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(6) Film & Video

Peace, Environment & Sustainability: Planet in Focus | Bullfrog Films | Directory of Environmental Videos Online | Green Job and Environmental Videos on YouTube | Environment & Nature Films | Documentaries (2) | Green Heroes TV | Hot Docs | National Film Board | Peace Films | Liberation Video | Indypeer | Boiling Frog | GreenEnergyTV | CinemaPolitica | Earth Focus TV | Radio & TV
Video Activism:
TVAC | VideoActivism | Handbook | more | more

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(7) Books, Bookstores & Libraries

Book catalogues, on-line shopping & mail order
Grassroots Environmental Products (Toronto & online)
Fertile Ground Environmental Bookstore (Toronto & online)
Arbour Environmental Shoppe (Ottawa & online)
Chelsea Green:
books for sustainable living (USA)
Yes Magazine book reviews
New Society Publishing: sustainable living, environment, community, conflict, more (USA)
Seasoned Booksellers hard to find and out of print books on sustainability, renewable energy, wilderness adventures and back-to-the-land skills (USA)
Real Goods: books, CD's & videos (USA)
Sustainable Living Books 416-410-7581 (website launch early 2003)
Detour Publications: transportation & urban ecology (books & videos) (Canada)
New Internationalist Books (click "books")
Eco Books (USA)
Community Bookshelf (USA)
Food & gardening books
Alternative bookstores & publishers (Canada)
Resources for Radicals (large bibliography of print resources, $12)

Green Economics & Sustainable Business Books

Grassroots Environmental Products
- books, magazines and many other products. 372 Danforth (Chester subway) 416-466-2841 and 408 Bloor W. (btwn. Spadina & Bathurst) 416-944-1993 (website shows only a few of their products)
Sustainable Living Books (at events or by appointment) 416-410-7581
Another Story Bookstore, 164 Danforth (E. of Broadview subway) 416-462-1104
GlobalAware Info Shop
This Ain't The Rosedale Library't_the_Rosedale_Library |
A Different Booklist
, 746 Bathurst, (Bathurst subway) 416-538-0889
DEC Bookroom
, 836 Bloor W. at Shaw. (just E. of Ossington subway) 416-516-2966
Uprising Books 6A Kensington, 416-516-2966,
Toronto Women's Bookstore, 73 Harbord (just W. of Spadina) 416-922-8744
The Big Carrot (magazines & natural food), 348 Danforth (Chester subway) 416-466-2129
More: Book City, World's Biggest Bookstore, Pages Books & Magazines...
Canada: ,
(in mainstream bookstores, ask for the environment, politics, or social sciences sections)

Canada: |

Tooker Gomberg Memorial Library – Opening August 2008. 800+ books of Tooker's collection from the 1960's onwards are being made available to the public. Topics include transportation, health, cities, waste, food, nuclear, peace, nature, politics, fiction, kids, development, energy, globalization, advocacy and much more. Visit the library any time during office hours and sign out Tooker's books. Read the classics by Jane Jacobs, Ivan Illich, Abby Hoffman, Henry David Thoreau, Gandhi, E.F. Schumacher, and many more. At the Centre for Social Innovation, 215 Spadina, 4th floor, Toronto.

For more sources of books, ideas and resources, please see the next section...

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(8) Resource Centres & Groups

Where else can you find books, ideas and resources? Many towns have some kind of green/public interest resource centre, where you can find a wide variety of literature, books and videos well as information about local groups, issues and opportunities. Failing that, the offices of local groups are likely to have some resources to browse or purchase. Other places where you can find both information and community: independent bookstores, natural food stores, food co-ops, libraries, farmers markets, churches and mosques, college & university student councils, and community centres. Look for a community bulletin board with local events, volunteer opps., skills exchange, car-sharing, etc. If you can't find one, suggest it! Here are just a few:

Ontario Public Interest Research Groups (OPIRG)
Note: if any of the links are bad, try also or
Guelph: OPIRG-Guelph, 1 Trent Lane, Univ. of Guelph, 519-824-2091 ,
Hamilton: OPIRG-McMaster, Hamilton Hall 210, McMaster Univ., 905-525-9140 ext.27289
Kingston: OPIRG-Kingston, The Grey House, Queens University, 613-533-3189,
Ottawa: OPIRG-Carleton, 326 Unicentre, Carleton Univ. 613-520-2757
Ottawa: OPIRG-Ottawa, 631 King Edward Ave., Univ. of Ottawa. 613-230-3076 (former site)
Peterborough: OPIRG-Peterborough, 740 Water St. 705-748-1767
St. Catharines: OPIRG-Brock, Alumni Student Centre, Rm 306, Brock Univ. 905-688-5550 Ext. 3499
Toronto: OPIRG-Toronto, 563 Spadina Ave, #101, U of T. 416-978-7770
Toronto: OPIRG-York, C449 Student Centre (4th floor), York Univ. 416-736-5724
Waterloo: WPIRG, Student Life Centre, Room 2139, U. of Waterloo. 519-888-4882
Windsor: OPIRG-Windsor, Grad House, 458 Sunset Ave., Univ. of Windsor. 519-253-3000 ext. 3872 or 519-253-1745.Resource Centre: in the Leddy Library.
Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, BC: (scroll down to "Other PIRGs")

Environmental Libraries & Resource Centres in Canada
Toronto: Canadian Environmental Law Association,
Toronto: Greenpeace
Toronto: Planet in Focus Environmental Film and Video Resource Library, (source)
Toronto: Grassroots Environmental Products, 372 Danforth and 408 Bloor W.
Toronto: Toronto Vegetarian Association
Ottawa: Peace & Environment Resource Centre (PERC), 174 First Ave. (at Bank), top floor 613-230-4590
Georgetown ON: Wastewise Halton Hills Community Resource Centre, 36 Armstrong
Guelph ON: Guelph International Resource Centre
Oakville ON: Oakville Community Centre for Peace, Environment & Human Rights,
Online: Sustainability Network
More Sustainable Living Resources ,

Environmental Groups & Organizations in Canada
There are over 1000 environmental groups in Ontario alone. Some of these have resource centres.
EcoPortal Canada - gateway to environmental networks and portals in Canada
Canadian Environnent Network (click on "networks")
Ontario Environment Network – directory of 1000 groups in Ontario:
Green Ontario Directory
USA: , ,

Peace, Human Rights & Social Justice Groups
Peace Groups
Centre for Social Justice (Canada)
416-927-0777 x225
Ontario Coalition for Social Justice
Metro Network for Social Justice (Toronto)
416-351-0095 x237
Democracy Watch (Canada)
Council of Canadians
Corporate Watch , , , ,
Media Watch , , , , , , , ,
More: , , , , ,
USA & international: ,

Environmental Stores
Toronto: Grassroots Environmental Products, 372 Danforth and 408 Bloor W.
Toronto: Birders Nature Stores, 265 Eglinton W. and 2100 Bloor W.
Toronto: GlobalAware Infoshop, Kensington Market
Ottawa: Arbour Environmental Shoppe, 800 Bank St. | more green businesses in Ottawa
Halifax, Port Perry ON, Mahone Bay NS, Stratford ON, Bayfield ON: P'lovers
Edmonton AB: Earth's General Store
Victoria, Tofino, Whistler BC:
Fiber Options
Canada (online):
Mountain Equipment Co-op, gear & clothing for non-motorized outdoor activities such as walking, hiking, cycling, camping, paddling, skiing, etc. Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa, Halifax.
USA: Real Goods

Food Co-ops, Natural Food Stores, Farmers Markets:

Community Information Centres
Toronto: 416-397-4636 (information on social service and government agencies)

Canada: ,

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(9) Other Gathering Places

Conversation Cafés and Meetups
Conversation Cafés and Meetups are a new approach that is receiving a lot of attention. Here is a blurb from "Why Conversation Cafés? Because when you put strangers, caffeine and ideas in the same room, brilliant things can happen. For that very reason, the British Parliament banned coffeehouses in the 1700s as hotbeds of sedition. Might we brew up a similar social liveliness now? With democracy, critical thinking and "the ties that bind" all under siege, this may be the most radical cup of coffee you ever drink". Meetups offer a similar approach. The way such get-togethers are structured and facilitated can help ensure a positive experience: see the section on Community & Group Process, especially the links on talking circles, listening circles, etc.

Share It, Communicate It, Discuss It
The links on this page lead to much fascinating reading, watching, listening, and face-to-face networking. When you find something you like – or are concerned about, or don't understand – why not share it with others? Host a video screening, a discussion, a speaker... or simply print and discuss it with friends. Find out if anyone else has held (or will be holding) an event on the topic. See our on-line calendar, our monthly newsletter, and our directory of other progressive calendars . Or, participate from a distance via online forums, e-mail discussion groups, and letters to the editor. It is by actively questioning, debating – by learning and working together – that we will find realistic, workable solutions.

Create Community Anywhere
For many ideas about how to network, communicate and find or create community anywhere, see the Create Community Anywhere section of our Community Page.

Food Co-ops
Food co-ops often have alternative community bulletin boards, progressive magazines, and other resources
Toronto: Karma Co-op, 739 Palmerston Ave. (Bathurst subway), 416-534-1470
Toronto: The Big Carrot (a worker co-op), 348 Danforth (Chester subway) 416-466-2129
Waterloo: Ebytown Food Co-op,
280 Phillip St. Bldg. A4. 519-886-8806
Many more: Ontario Natural Food Co-op, "a co-operative federation of retail food co-operatives, food buying clubs, and non-collectively structured retailers" 416-503-1144 ext. 225. Start a natural food buying club (a co-op without a storefront):
More info on co-ops in general:

Natural Food Stores
Natural food stores sometimes have community bulletin boards and a selection of magazines
Ontario: (booklet),
USA: (book)

Farmers Markets
Farmers markets can be a "verbal resource centre" of who's doing what; sometimes they also have a bulletin board and other resources.
Farmers Markets Ontario 613-475-4769 1-800-387-3276.
See also the Farmers Markets section of our Organic Opportunities Directory.
Organic Farmers Markets: Thornhill: (Saturday mornings, Toronto Waldorf School, 9100 Bathurst, 1 mile north of Hwy. 7) 905-707-5771. Toronto: 238 Queen W. (NW corner of bldg), 8am-2pm, 416-703-4975. Ottawa: Saturdays 10am-2pm, Kingsway United Church, 630 Island Park, 613-726-0418. More:

Fair Trade Cafes & Vegetarian Restaurants
Suggest that they start a community bulletin board for related issues (if they haven't already)
Canada: (click on "TransFair Canada's Licensees")
Toronto area:

Events provide excellent opportunities to learn, ask questions, and participate in shaping a better society. For listings of a wide variety of events that you probably won't see in the mainstream media: including our on-line calendar: , our e-mail newsletter: and our links to other progressive calendars

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(10) Become the Media!

If Big Media isn't telling the whole story, why not do it yourself? Read at least a brief introduction on journalism, writing, or critical thought. Get involved with a publication or website you like, or a community radio station. Try, Straight Goods, The Activist, Indymedia, or others (see above). Contribute stories, letters to the editor, reader's forum comments, photographs, or video footage, or help out in other ways. Or, create your own publication. Take some independent media workshops: see or or other activist groups in your area. Go to meetings of the local chapter or other publications. Listen, learn and help out. Take a course in journalism or writing, or make up your own from the links below. Along the way, try to learn all you can about ecology, economics, politics and history.

How To Write A Letter To The Editor

"Communicating with journalists makes a difference. It does not have to be perfect; not all letters to journalists need to be for publication. Even a one-sentence, handwritten note to a reporter can be helpful." Also, how to write an op-ed and how to communicate with journalists & media in general ,

A Short Course in Journalism & Activism

Journalism, Writing, Video, Critical Thinking
How To Be A Journalist ,
Journalism Lectures
Journalism Introduction
The Perverted Pyramid
Politics and The Media
Journalism Net
Video Activist Handbook
How to Take the Fog Out of Writing, Robert Gunning & Douglas Mueller, Chicago: Dartnell Press, 1985.
Critical Thinking: Google Directory – based on The Open Directory | Wikipedia on Critical Thinking

How to be an Activist
Internet Activism Open Directory | Google Directory

Ecology, Economy, Politics & History (see also section on Books, above)
Ecological Economics (video & study guide) (2)
No-Nonsense Guides (world history, globalization, climate change)

"Don't hate the media, become the media" – Jello Biafra (Become The Media, spoken word CD)

Know the Media – Change the Media – Be the Media
Media Carta Manifesto

"Powerlessness and silence go together. We...should use our privileged positions not as a shelter from the world's reality, but as a platform from which to speak. A voice is a gift. It shoud be cherished and used." – Margaret Atwood

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(11) Media Watch

Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting
Media Literacy
Canadian Journalists for Free Expression
Straight Goods Media Files
PR Watch
– manipulative practices used to control political debates & public opinion
Media Watch (USA)
ZNet Media Watch
Press & Broadcast Freedom (Canada)
Media Study
International Freedom of Expression Exchange
Democracy Watch, Corporate Watch, more:

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(12) Other Media Guides & Links

Alternative Guides & Links
ZNet Alternative Media Watch
Nobody's Media But Our Own (Canada)
Alternative News Sources (Canada)
Independent News Collective (INK)
Alternative Press Index
(US & worldwide)
Alternate News Sources (US & worldwide)
Utne Independent Press Awards – 2003
– 2002:
More: Google Directory – based on the Open Directory | | | Green Pages Directory

Mainstream Guides & Links
Bourque Newswatch
Journalism Net

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(13) Quotes & Inspiration

On Mainstream Media

"There is no such thing, at this date of the world's history, in America, as an independent press. You know it and I know it. There is not one of you who dares to write your honest opinions, and if you did, you know beforehand that it would never appear in print. I am paid weekly for keeping my honest opinion out of the paper I am connected with. Others of you are paid similar salaries for similar things, and any of you who would be so foolish as to write honest opinions would be out on the streets looking for another job. If I allowed my honest opinions to appear in one issue of my paper, before twenty-four hours my occupation would be gone. The business of the journalists is to destroy the truth, to lie outright, to pervert, to vilify, to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell his country and his race for his daily bread. You know it and I know it, and what folly is this toasting an independent press? We are the tools and vassals of rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks, they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes." – John Swinton (attributed)

"Our job is to give people not what they want, but what we decide they ought to have." – Richard Salant, former President of CBS News

"The mass media is itself part of the same power structure that plunders the planet and inflicts human rights abuses on a massive scale" – David Cromwell

"The real mass media are basically trying to divert people." ... "Let everybody be crazed about professional sports or sex scandals" – Noam Chomsky

"As long as each individual is facing the television tube alone, formal freedom poses no threat to privilege" – Noam Chomsky

"Where once the student was taught that the unexamined life was not worth living, he is now taught that the profitably lived life is not worth examining." – Benjamin Barber

"The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking." – J. K. Galbraith

"The world's press is losing its ability to keep power in check" – Frank Vogl

"The New York Times is for us what Pravda was for the Soviets" – Gore Vidal

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

Inspiration for Action

"Powerlessness and silence go together. We...should use our privileged positions not as a shelter from the world's reality, but as a platform from which to speak. A voice is a gift. It shoud be cherished and used." – Margaret Atwood

"When the forms of an old culture are dying, the new culture is created by a few people who are not afraid to be insecure" – Rudolf Bahro

"A dead thing can go with the stream, but only a living thing can go against it." – G.K. Chesterton

"There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest" – Elie Wiesel

"It is not the function of our government to keep the citizen from falling into error; it is the function of the citizen to keep the government from falling into error" – United States Supreme Court - American Communications Association v. Douds

"A key is just a bunch of little angles, in the right combination." – JP Warren

"If you think that something small cannot make a difference – try going to sleep with a mosquito in the room." – unknown origin

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

(14) About this Guide

Alternative Voices – Alternative Media, Resource & Networking Guide.
Where can you go for information, ideas, and community?

On this page you will find links to a variety of alternative voices – and opportunities for participation. It includes information and links from the around the world, but with some degree of focus on Ontario, Canada, and North America.

This is a one-time special edition of the People- & Planet-Friendly Events, which will be added to our website at . If time allows, it may be revised in the future. If you see any errors or omissions, please let us know.

These resources listed above are not "approved" or endorsed by us. Rather, they are intended as alternatives to large, mainstream, corporate-sponsored media. But they too have varying credentials and biases. And they have much fewer resources at their disposal than do the mainstream media. They should not be used to the exclusion of more mainstream sources... it is in the debate between all that there is the best hope of finding solutions.

For related events, organizations, resources, jobs and more, see:, the Directory, the Calendar, the GoodWork e-mail list and webpages, the EcoPortal and Sustainable Living Links.

To receive future special editions, subscribe to the People- & Planet-Friendly weekly e-mail newsletter: .

– Peter Blanchard

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

( homepage | subscribe questions | powered by )

People- & Planet-Friendly Events & Resources

People- & Planet-Friendly | GoodWork Canada |
an inspiring diversity of ideas, opportunities and things to do